If I were a farmer…

While checking out the latest headlines and otherwise perusing the PLOSONE site in search of some new and interesting research, I came across a meta-analysis that sounded interesting. With the provocative title of ‘A Meta-Analysis of the Impacts of Genetically Modified Crops’ (1)Klumper and Qaim, A Meta-Analysis of the Impacts of Genetically Modified Crops. PLoS ONE 9(11): e111629. (2014) doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0111629 who wouldn’t read it? (more…) Notes   [ + ] 1. ↑ Klumper and Qaim, A Meta-Analysis of the Impacts of Genetically Modified Crops. PLoS ONE 9(11): e111629. (2014) doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0111629

Pipeline Update

~~~UPDATE:  The project has been officially scrapped its pipeline project May of 2016.~~~ Undoubtedly many of you had heard me speak about the proposed Kinder-Morgan/TGP Northeast Energy Direct pipeline project over the past year or so, and until now there hadn’t been any major developments. Before I dive right into the recent changes for the project as announced by Kinder-Morgan, let me begin with a bit of background. Background The Kinder-Morgan pipeline project is “being developed to meet the increased demand in the Northeast United States for transportation capacity of natural gas” (1)Kinder-Morgan, NED Project. and will be capable of...

The Farm gets some Heat

As many people have realized, this winter look like it will be quite similar to the last: bouts of cold arctic air sweeping down across the country making all of our lives a little bit chilly. The farm is unfortunately located in an area that already gets much colder than most of the areas east of it, especially considering that it is in Massachusetts. Here is a quick graph(1)Chart computed by Wolfram Alpha, my go to science-data site. of the temperature history of the past month of both Warwick and Boston:   Now that is clearly New England weather! So...

New Flooring Today

What became fairly obvious the last time we were up at the farm was the pressing need to put down the finish floor in the kitchen. Typically such projects would be cast aside since they are finish and therefore critical to form–not function. But here the case is a bit different. Since we want the kitchen cabinets to lay atop the flooring, we need to get it down before the cabinets can go in, before the plumbing can be finished off and before anything can be moved into the kitchen in order to make room in other areas. So what flooring to...

Kitchen Windows for the Farm

Today we completed one more step on the path to a finished kitchen at the farm. Since kitchens are usually well lit and open places—who wants to cook, clean, and serve food from a shadowy little corner anyway?—we had decided to install two new windows: one behind where the sink will be and the other about 18 inches further down the counter. The latter of which was actually installed where a preexisting window used to be found, but owing to it low height off the floor we elected to replace it with a shorter one so that the counter can...

Networking Jacks

This is a bit less a personal piece as much as an esoteric description of a system I recently discovered that anyone who is going to wiring up AV, telephone and/or ethernet networks should check out. The package is called the Keystone Module System (1)Checkout the Wikipedia article for more info.. It consists of a snap-in terminal set that are interchangeable and permit a highly customizable system to be places. The faceplates themselves range from 1 to 6 space designs in order to accommodate whatever number of endings you need. You can imagine that for a home theater setup you might need access to...

Biking around Warwick MA

While my ride yesterday wasn’t my first ride out on the roads by the farm, it was the first with my new Fenix 2 sport watch made by Garmin. My first impressions of the area’s friendliness on the roads were quite positive and I only wish the roads around the cape were so wide and frequented by conscientious drivers(1)Some of the consideration for bicycles I noticed while touring the area may have been due, I now realize, to their somewhat frequent encounters with slow moving tractors which are in many respects similar to cyclists.. Most of the roads are extra...

The Kelly-Hubbard Farm

This summer my parents and I bought a farm in central-west, or is it west-central mass? Well either way, it’s a plot of land with an old farmhouse, barn, and shed about 10 miles off the scenic Mohawk Trail (Rte 2) in Warwick, MA. There’s 67 acres, most of which is still forested with somewhere between 6 and 10 acres cleared. There is a small river, a pond*, and several streams and springs on the property that not only gives the plot a great potential but also the picaresque, farmhouse aesthetic. While the cleared fields, or meadows, are quite classic,...

Winery Adventure

Last week while at the Farm, I was chewing over the potential crops and uses for the several acres of cleared land behind and beside the farmhouse. After going over the typical list of crops such as corn or potato I looked up to see a dilapidated fence, or rather fenceposts, in the field across from me, so why not try replacing this fence with a trellised plant such as grapes? Why not grapes? And grapes lead to one thing, at least in my mind, and that is wine. To place a small vineyard on the farm seems like the...